Radium Removal, Ion-Exchange, And Backwash Waste Removal Create Higher-Quality Water


Gary Warner, Executive Vice President of Tonka Water, discusses how radium removal, ion-exchange processes, and backwash waste removal leads to a higher level of purity.

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The following is an excerpt from a Q&A with Water Online Radio. Click on the Radio Player above to hear the full interview.

Water Online Radio: Gary, how does Tonka Water serve the market?

Gary: Well, Tonka Water is focused primarily on treating surface water and ground water. We have a broad product line that we customize to address specific water issues that a community may face. We consider ourselves innovators, as EPA adds new regulations. Tonka has a history of developing new technologies to address those changes.

One of the technologies is radium removal using pre-formed, pre-mixed hydrous manganese oxide. We brought that to market in 2000, and it’s is still a viable technology today.

We’ve also developed new technologies to improve treatment plant operations and extend life of equipment. A good example of that is our Simul-Wash process, which reduces backwash waste for communities and reduces their cost of operation.

Water Online Radio: Why did you choose to rebrand Tonka Water, and how is it going?

Gary: Well, originally, Tonka was incorporated as Tonka Equipment Company. We decided to change our name because it really did not identify the market that we serve. We knew we wanted to maintain Tonka in our name, and we wanted to make sure people understood what we did.

We also changed our logo. Historically, we had used a water drop. We tried to maintain some of those historical elements of the brand while updating the image. We kept the use of the water drop but we gave it a more updated look.

We also changed our tag line to “trusted systems and resourceful thinking,” and this is now fully incorporated throughout the organization, our sales and marketing materials, and our website.

Water Online Radio: How has the market responded to it?

Gary: The market has responded very favorably. Our organization is very positive about it. We did the right thing by rebranding Tonka Water.

Water Online Radio: How does that all fit in with key trends in the market place?

Gary: Right now, communities want to save water and reduce their footprint. By rebranding, we have been able to come up with some new products that help that focus.

Water Online Radio: Tell us about the Purex system.

Gary: Purex is a unique product. It’s an ion-exchange system that uses a multi-port valve and numerous vessels. The concept behind it is that the vessels regenerate consistently throughout their operation.

This produces higher-quality water than a conventional ion exchange process. We also reduced the amount of waste that is produced in the operation of the unit. That serves the community well by meeting the requirement of reduced waste and higher quality affluent. It also creates a smaller footprint than a conventional ion exchange system.

Water Online Radio: What kind of a financial impact is the Purex system going to have on a treatment plant?

Gary: Well, from a cost of operation standpoint, it is going to have a significant impact. The capital cost is going to be a little more expensive than conventional but the payback is fairly quick due to its reduced cost of operation. That is a very effective system.

Click on the Radio Player above to hear the full interview...